2013 MRC Review: Complex


Complex is a yaoi that, over the course of four volumes, attempts to chronicle the lives of a couple, Tatsuya Fujoika and Junichi Shinozaki. The manga follows the boys from childhood to death, looking at the various trials and triumphs the two experience throughout their relationship, with each chapter typically focusing on a different year in the boys’ lives. At a four volume length, it’s an ambitious story, a bit too ambitious if you ask me. I’ll get it out of the way now and say that this isn’t a manga that I’d recommend to anyone. Though the story does have some standout moments, those are often overshadowed by the manga’s numerous problems, most of which revolve around the handling of the story and characters. Continue reading

Final Thoughts: Junjou Romantica (OVA)

Junjou OVA

When I heard Junjou Romantica was getting an OVA, four years after the sequel aired, I was a bit shocked, to say the least because I really wanted a Sekai-ichi one. I guess it only means somewhat trashy yaoi is doin’ well over there in Japan. Since I haven’t had an opportunity to really talk about Junjou before, I figure now might be a good as time as ever so that you all have an idea of where my needless bashing opinions regarding certain aspects of the show are coming from.

Once upon a time, having just finished my first yaoi/shounen-ai, Sekai-ichi Hatsukoi, and liked it, I decided I might as well check out the other (in)famous series by the same author, tentatively believing that it might have some of what I liked about Sekai-ichi. (It was only later that I discovered someone else writes the story for Sekai-ichi, which explains a hell of a lot.) So, I plopped down,  watched both seasons of Junjou Romantica, and thanked the heavens above that my first yaoi had been Sekai-ichiJunjou Romantica isn’t terrible, per say–although I know some probably consider it to be for justifiable reasons–but it does have its fair share of annoyances that tended to hurt my viewing experience. For instance, it tends to spend more time on angsty drama and sex than it does actually building up the relationships between its characters. There was a bit of build up, but everyone felt a tad shallow and unlikable which is quite a feat considering the fact that the show split it’s time between 6 guys (three couples: Romantica, Egoist and Terrorist.). All in all, Junjou Romantica wasn’t, by any means, the best thing I’ve watched. It was alright, though and I enjoyed bits of it (no, not the sexy time bits), so, when the OVA announcement came, I quietly resigned myself to watch the darn thing. Surprisingly, the OVA was kind of fun to watch with little time to revert back to the dumb drama that plagued the series. Continue reading

Final Thoughts – There She Is!! (ONA)


There She Is!! is a five episode Korean flash that I watched about two years ago. Since I was feeling a bit nostalgic and the show is pretty short, I decided to see how well it’s held up. As it turns out, it proved to be as sweet and fun to watch as it was the first time.

The story follows the relationship between a female rabbit, Doki, and a male cat, Nabi, who she falls in love with at first sight. Though Nabi who initially tries to avoid and resist Doki’s extravagant shows of love, he eventually gives in and goes on a date with her, discovering that he, too, had fallen just a bit for the cheerful rabbit. This is all fine and dandy, but what really makes these shorts pop are the societal reactions to their relationship and how Nabi deals with them. In their society of rabbits and cats, Nabi and Doki’s intermingling is severely frowned upon as the majority views such a relationship as socially unacceptable. The last two episodes deal almost exclusively with the growing number of problems that pop up for the two as they try to be a regular couple in a society that sees them as abnormal and wrong.

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The Beauty of Iblard

Let me start by saying that if I was ever given the chance to visit Iblard, you can bet your bottom dollar that I would take that offer up in a heart beat. To walk around in a world that is such a beautiful combination magic and color would be absolutely amazing.

The reason I bring up my outlandish desire to visit the world of Iblard is because of how it is presented in it’s OVAIblard Jikan, which is a thirty minute episode that basically explores the various landscapes of Iblard. The OVA is, essentially, a slideshow of colorful paintings that highlight its various natural and man-made landscapes. Watching a bunch of pretty pictures slowly pass by with minimal people appearances for thirty minutes, sounds like it would get unbelievably boring really quickly, but, if you have a little patience, then I think you’ll find yourself getting lost in the world of Iblard. Continue reading

Inu x Boku SS Special Final Thoughts


I tend to stay away from specials because they are usually random shorts, slice of life and comedic in nature, that I don’t particularly care about. However, I do watch the occasional special if I liked a series a lot and am looking for more. Although Inu x Boku SS isn’t my favorite series, the special didn’t look too bad and it looked like it had some more of the couple moments that I was so pleasantly surprised by in the series. This special follows the same type of format I described earlier (random, comedic, slice of life), but I found myself enjoying the little shorts and seeing some characters again that I genuinely liked in the series. Continue reading

Ancient Books of Ys II (OVA) Final Thoughts

First season review: HERE

Ancient Books of Ys II  follows our young hero, Adol, as he is whisked away from Esteria and up to the floating land of Ys where the Black Pearl, the source of evil that spawns monsters, is located. Those on Ys are a hopeless and down trodden people whose lives are ruled by fear. The monsters on Ys are more powerful and intelligent than the brainless beings seen on Esteria in Ancient Books of Ys and terrorize the people by arbitrarily taking sacrifices from the small villages that dot the land. As a result, the people have become submissive and willing to appease the monsters with their sacrifices in return for being allowed to live. The situation is bleak and begins to look worse as the monsters begin to demand and take more sacrifices with the villagers helpless to do anything but look on and hope they are not next. Continue reading

Natsume Yuujinchou Shi Final Thoughts


And so it ends.

Two years after finishing Natsume Yuujinchou, I have finally caught myself up completely with this amazing series that, when I think about it, was one the first series I watched that ignited my passion for anime. Looking at the series as a whole, I have to say that it is definitely up there in terms of my favorite series. Natsume is a character I grew to really like because of how well done his development is. He is an amazingly well-thought out character who is given a past that is filled with a lot of pain and sadness, a present that is full of love and acceptance, and a future that, though uncertain, looks bright and promising in terms of how he will continue to grow and open up. The stories are pretty slice of life, but manage to convey a wide range of emotion in a subtle way that makes for episodes ranging from heartwarming to heartbreaking. Yes, the show can get repetitive with a lot of the same story format going on, but I didn’t really mind because I was always more interested in how, even though many of the stories follow a similar format, they still manage to be heartwarming. I’m a little sad to finally be done with the series, but it took me on a great ride and I have nothing but fond memories of it. Also, even though while watching the end of the third season and thinking that it had more of a final feeling to it, I think that the ending to Natsume Yuujinchou Shi is a much better since it packs more of an emotional punch with the last few minutes providing a touching and, I think, satisfying end.

Natsume Yuujinchou Shi is, from what I’ve been hearing, most likely the last installment of the Natsume Yuujinchou series which follows around Mr. Takashi Natsume as he continues along his path of self-acceptance, learning to trust others, and coming to terms with his past. He has the inconvenient ability of being able to see these monsters called Youkai and this ability has come to be the root of a lot of suffering he has endured since he was a child. He is also followed around by a Youkai, Nyanko-Sensei, who acts as his bodyguard, protecting him from other Youkai in return for being guaranteed what is left of a book of Youkai’s names called the Book of Friends created by the infamous Reiko, Natsume’s grandmother who had the same ability as him. Continue reading

Zoku Natsume Yuujinchou Final Thoughts

OP, ED (can’t believe I forgot to put these)

Yay, another season down. Two more to go.

I wasted no time in getting into this series and went right into this after re-watching the first season, finally relieving it of it’s place near the bottom of my plan to watch list. I have to say that my feelings about this installment are pretty much the same as the ones regarding the first season. This season built more on Natsume’s character and also started going more into his feelings about himself, the people around him, and youkai. Although lonliness remained a prevelant theme throughout the show, it was sort of balanced out by the generally happier and more uplifting spirit of the season. One of my favorite things about this season was seeing the introduction of youkai that were pretty menacing in their own right and really put Natsume in a tight spot. Overall, I would have to say that I loved this part of Natsume’s story just as much, if not more, than the first part.

The story follows pretty much the same kind of format as the first season, meaning it was pretty episodic. Though, this season there were one or two mini-arcs that a nice change-up and usually allowed for more Natsume development. Despite remaining epsidoic, as with the first season, every episode was pretty effective in building Natsume up as a character even more. There was a lot more focus, I think, this season on both Natsume’s feelings about his relationships with youkai and humans. We continue to see snipets of his past that show he didn’t exactly have a stellar childhood, but we also see how his current family makes an effort to let him know that he belongs and that they love him. Continue reading

Computer Kakumei (OVA)

Another OVA guys!

So, I basically just watched this because I was procrastinating on Bakuman again and saw this under AnimeSeason’s Recently Added Anime Section. Although the synopsis didn’t really help me when it came to figuring out what it would be about, I figured it wouldn’t be a bad use of ten minutes. Although the beginning of the OVA had me thinking it would be a little boring and unexpectedly slice of life, I found myself pleasantly surprised by it. I’ll admit it and say that I was thinking that this OVA would be focusing on a society dominated by computers in a negative way because I see that a lot when it comes to a society that has a large computer influence. However, this OVA had a pretty uplifting story. The technology talked about was being used for the good of humanity and in a way that would help people around the world. Heck, even the little food robots were cute and friendly looking. The only thing, I suppose that kind of creeped me out a little was that human service in places like fast food restaurants was almost, if not completely, eliminated. That just weirded me out a little. I also didn’t really understand the point of creating a computer/robot thing (?) that would go to school. Maybe to make a more human computer? Who knows. Anyhow, seeing the computer/robot guy at the end made me wish that there was more to the OVA so that I could find out more about him as well as what exactly the point of him was. Continue reading

Nagareboshi Lens (OVA) Final Thoughts

The main reason I watched this OVA is because I’m a huge shoujo and romance fan. When I first started out watching anime, that is pretty much all I watched. For that reason, even though my standards are somewhat higher today and it takes a little more to impress me, I still have a soft spot in my heart for those fluffy, silly, sweet shoujo stories.

Nagareboshi Lens is an 18 minute OVA about a shoujo couple. That was basically the whole OVA in a nutshell. I’m completely serious. The impressive thing about this OVA is how it manages to fit just about every single shoujo stereotype (missed the usual bully bit, though) into 18 minutes. You had the spontaneous meeting, the instant spark of feelings, all the couple junk on campus, the usual questionable group of guys hitting on the girl, the big eyes, and sparkles…lots and lots of sparkles. This OVA had sparkles flying from the characters and corners of the screen about every two minutes, the only explanation for this being because, you know, love is so sparkly… Continue reading